The Liquid Bullshit Terror Plot

No, it’s not an airborne fertilizer bomb. It’s not a bomb at all, as an eminent British military scientist reveals.

From Raw Story:

Lieutenant-Colonel (ret.) Nigel Wylde, a former senior British Army Intelligence Officer, has suggested that the police and government story about the “terror plot” revealed on 10th August was part of a “pattern of lies and deceit.”

British and American government officials have described the operation which resulting in the arrest of 24 mostly British Muslim suspects, as a resounding success. Thirteen of the suspects have been charged, and two released without charges.


According to security sources, the terror suspects were planning to board up to ten civilian airliners and detonate highly volatile liquid explosives on the planes in a spectacular terrorist operation. The liquid explosives — either TATP (Triacetone Triperoxide), DADP (diacetone diperoxide) or the less sensitive HMTD (hexamethylene triperoxide diamine) — were reportedly to be made on board the planes by mixing sports drinks with a peroxide-based household gel and then be detonated using an MP3 player or mobile phone.

But Lt. Col. Wylde, who was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal for his command of the Belfast Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit in 1974, described this scenario as a “fiction.” Creating liquid explosives is a “highly dangerous and sophisticated task,” he states, one that requires not only significant chemical expertise but also appropriate equipment.

“The idea that these people could sit in the plane toilet and simply mix together these normal household fluids to create a high explosive capable of blowing up the entire aircraft is untenable,” said Lt. Col. Wylde, who was trained as an ammunition technical officer responsible for terrorist bomb disposal at the Royal Army Ordnance Corps in Sandhurst.

[…]

“So who came up with the idea that a bomb could be made on board? Not Al Qaeda for sure. It would not work. Bin Laden is interested in success not deterrence by failure,” Wylde stated.

“This story has been blown out of all proportion. The liquids would need to be carefully distilled at freezing temperatures to extract the required chemicals, which are very difficult to obtain in the purities needed.”

Once the fluids have been extracted, the process of mixing them produces significant amounts of heat and vile fumes. “The resulting liquid then needs some hours at room temperature for the white crystals that are the explosive to develop.” The whole process, which can take between 12 and 36 hours, is “very dangerous, even in a lab, and can lead to premature detonation,” said Lt. Col. Wylde.

If there was a conspiracy, he added, “it did not involve manufacturing the explosives in the loo,” as this simply “could not have worked.” The process would be quickly and easily detected. The fumes of the chemicals in the toilet “would be smelt by anybody in the area.” They would also inevitably “cause the alarms in the toilet and in the air change system in the aircraft to be triggered. The pilot has the ability to dump all the air from an aircraft as a fire-fighting measure, leaving people to use oxygen masks. All this means the planned attack would be detected long before the queues outside the loo had grown to enormous lengths.”

Even if it was possible for the explosive to have been made on the aircraft, a detonator, probably made from TATP, would be needed to set it off. “It is very dangerous and risky to the individual,” Wylde said. “As the quantity involved would be small this would injure the would-be suicide bomber but not endanger the aircraft, thus defeating the object of bringing down an aircraft.”

Despite the implausibility of this scenario, it has been used to justify wide-ranging new security measures that threaten to permanently curtail civil liberties and to suspend sections of the United Kingdom’s Human Rights Act of 1998. “Why were the public delicately informed of an alleged conspiracy which the authorities knew, or should have known, could not have worked?” asked Lt. Col. Wylde.

“This is not a new problem,” he added, noting that ‘shoe-bomber’ Richard Reid had attempted to use this type of explosive on a plane in December 2001. “If this threat is real, what has been done to develop explosive test kits capable of detecting peroxide based explosives?” asked Wylde. “These are the real issues about protecting the public that have not been publicised. Instead we are going to get demands for more internment without trial.”

And therein lies the REAL ruse behind this non-plot. Yes, there is a liquid-terror conspiracy, but it’s not an al-Qaida strike attempt. As James Petras, writing for the excellent French Voltaire Network, points out, this is just too nebulous on too many levels:

Initially the British and US authorities claimed that the explosive device was a "liquid bomb," yet no liquid or non-liquid bomb was discovered on the premises or persons of any of the accused. Nor has any evidence been produced as to the capability of any of the suspects in making, moving or detonating the "liquid bomb" — a very volatile solution if handled by unskilled operatives. No evidence has been presented on the nature of the specific liquid bomb question, or any spoken discussion or written documents about the liquid bomb, which would implicate any of the suspects. No bottle, liquid or chemical formula has been found among any of the suspects. Nor have any of the ingredients that go into making the "liquid bomb" been uncovered. Nor has any evidence been presented as to where the liquid was supposed to come from (the source) or whether it was purchased locally or overseas.

When the liquid bomb story was ridiculed into obscurity, British Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clark claimed that, "bomb making equipment including chemicals and electric components had been found,"

Once again there is no mention of what "electronic components" and "chemicals" were found, in whose home or office and if they might be related to non-bomb making activities. Were these so-called new bomb-making items owned by a specific person or group of persons, and if so were they known by the parties implicated to be part of a bombing plot. Moreover, when and why have the authorities switched from the liquid bombs to identifying old fashion electronic detonators? Is there any evidence — documents or taped discussions — that link these electronic detonators and chemicals with the specific plot to "blow up 9 US bound airliners"?

Instead of providing relevant facts clearing up basic questions of names, dates, weapons, and travel dates, Commissioner Clark gives the press a laundry list of items that could be found in millions of homes and the large number of buildings searched (69 so far). If stair climbing earns promotions, Clark should be nominated for a knighthood. According to Clark the police discovered more than 400 computers, 200 mobile telephones, 8,000 computer media items (items as catastrophic as memory sticks, CDs and DVDs); police removed 6,000 gigabytes of data from the seized computers (150 from each computer) and a few video recordings. One presumes, in the absence of any qualitative data demonstrating that the suspects were in fact preparing bombs in order to destroy nine US airliners, that Commissioner Clark is seeking public sympathy for his minions’ enormous capacity to lift and remove electronic equipment from one site to another in up to 69 buildings. This is a notable achievement if we are talking about a moving company and not a high-powered police investigation of an event of "catastrophic consequences."

Some of the suspects were arrested because they have traveled to Pakistan at the beginning of the school year holidays. British and US authorities forget to mention that tens of thousands of Pakistani ex-pats return to visit family at precisely that time of year.

The wise guys on Wall Street and The City of London never took the liquid bomb plot seriously: At no point did the Market respond, nose-dive, crash or panic. The announced plot to bomb airlines was ignored by all Big Players on the US and London stock markets. In fact, petrol prices dropped slightly. In contrast to 9/11 and the Madrid and London bombings (to which this plot is compared) the stock market ‘makers’ were not impressed by the governments’ claims of a ‘major catast
rophe.’ George Bush or Tony Blair, who were informed and discussed the "liquid bomb plot" several days beforehand, didn’t even skip a day of their vacations, in response to the catastrophic threat.

Now, does that sound like the kind of terror al-Q specializes in? We know their track record, and this doesn’t fit in.

No, the terror network in this case is much larger. It is the London-Washington Axis of Weasels. And it is relying on the free-floating–let’s call them liquid–anxieties of the modern, post-9/11 era to create terror in the hearts of people around the world. Petras again:

The bomb plot political ploy fits the previous political pattern of sacrificing capitalist economic interests to serve domestic political and ideological positions. Foreign policy failures lead to domestic political crimes, just as domestic policy crises lead to aggressive military expansion.

The criminal frame-up of young Muslim-South Asian British citizens by the British security officials was specifically designed to cover up for the failed Anglo-American invasion of Iraq and the Anglo-American backing for Israel’s destructive but failed invasion of Lebanon. Blair’s "liquid bombers" plot sacrificed a multiplicity of British capitalist interests in order to retain political offices and stave off an unceremonious early exit from power.

British capitalist interests may have suffered, but no doubt the US military-industrial complex isn’t hurting.

Toady Blair’s bum, however, is quite another story.

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